Sunday, September 30, 2012

Let the Black Templar Crusade Begin!

With 6th edition out and in my hands I am definitely enjoying getting back into 40K.

While the dice gods are rarely on my side (as my opponents will acknowledge) they HAVE been unusually kind recently when it comes to excellent value purchasing opportunities. I recently picked up some Chaos Space Marines, and then this week some Black Templar Space Marines also appeared in my quadrant (and at a good price.) I was interested in the CSMs as a good way to build the foundation of an army that could grow later by purchasing the Cultists from the Dark Vengeance Box, but I basically got interested in the DTs after reading about them once I heard there were some available.

Here is what I picked up: (a big thanks to the original seller!) If I have got the names of the units or models mixed up bear with me - I am learning my way around!

x1 Space Marine commander
x1 Emperor's champion (converted)

HQ (Command Squad)
x1 Medic
x1 plasma gun Marine
x1 normal space marine with bolter
x1 Standard Bearer
x1 Marine with power shield and flaming sword

x1 Tactical squad of 10 (5 initiates + 5 Neophytes)
x1 Tactical squad of 10 (5 initiates + 5 Neophytes)
x1 Rhino

x1 Dreadnaught (power claw/ assault cannon)
x1 Techmarine
x1 Swordbrethren squad (bolt pistols/ chainswords)

Fast Attack.
x1 squad of 4 bikes, (3 with power weapon)
x1 squad of 4 bikes, (3 with power weapon)

As you can see, this is the first army that I have laid my hands on that is already fully painted! Hats-off to the original owner for a job well done. :-) It looks to be around 1,000 to 1,250 points?

Reading around a bit, it appears that the Dark Templar Codex, like the Chaos Space Marines Codex, is a bit old, (new CSM Codex out this week!) but hey, they are a pretty damn cool chapter - as I am not a competitive player at all that makes them all good in my book. What kid isn't interested in the Knights Templar after all? (Especially a hard-core, far-future version with a massive chip on their collective shoulder pads, a never-ending crusade, and a definite disdain for typical Space Marine rules.)

The question is, are any other purchases essential for this army? E.g. Terminators always seem to be a good buy for Space Marines...

Any hints and tips out there?

P. S. This purchase also included a Fortress of Redemption, so at least these Black Templars have a place to hang out!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Citadel Paints "Sortable" Conversion Chart

Copyright Games Workshop


So, as I still use the "old" Citadel Paints in my cupboard, when I publish a painting guide I refer to those, but at the same time include a link to the conversion chart published by Games Workshop (which can be found here.)

The more I thought about it though, the more I realized that providing just a link wasn't very friendly. The actual chart itself (while great!) is quite difficult to navigate (at least it was for me). The reader has to look at what colour I used, then scan the chart for the right equivalent.

So, please find below a simple alphabetical list of all the old colours with the new colours. It isn't pretty (I've never embedded a Google Doc before), but I think it should help.


1.) This is just conversion for the "Old" paints, not a full list of the new range.
2.) Games Workshop freely admits that the new colours don't exactly match the old ones.
3.) To view the fully sortable spreadsheet, click HERE 

(Right click on column heading A, B, or C, then choose "Sort"). This will help you...
...sort by a "Family" of colours (my groupings, so logical to me at least!)
...sort by the NEW colours so you can see the old equivalents. 
Hope this is of use to someone!


Saturday, September 22, 2012

Chaos is here!

Well, following my last post about the haul of Chaos Space Marines I recently laid my hands on, it was just today that I received an email from Games Workshop Japan announcing the new Chaos Space Marine Codex and models!

My initial reaction was a definite mix of excitement and disappointment.

Excitement - Look, Chaos Space Marines are Great looking regular infantry (from the previous edition too), especially when adding in the recent Dark Vengeance models.
Check out these guys:

Chaos Marines:

Copyright Games Workshop
Warp Talons:
Copyright Games Workshop
Aspiring Champion
Copyright Games Workshop
Then disappointment: (1)
Flying metallic dragons??
Copyright Games Workshop
Copyright Games Workshop
Yeah, the "Heldrake". 
I could live with a version of an existing Space Marine flyer, because that would be in keeping with the current way that CSM vehicles are warped versions of SM vehicles. You know, the ones they probably would have had in the chapter vehicle pool when they "turned"...
No doubt there is a decent back story connection  ("It came from the depths of Chaos") or something, but it just seems a bit too far out there for me. 

Disappointment (2):
Armoured Dinosaurs???

Oops, wrong image. Here they are:


Yeah, the "Forgefiend/ Maulerfiend".

So on the one hand there are REALLY nice models for certain units (Warp Talons) and on the other hand, plenty of "Meh" (at least for me). The Heldrake for example just doesn't seem "right".  Now, I KNOW that this is a game set in the far future, so anything is possible, but somehow it doesn't work for me. I THINK the reason is that I was hoping for more military vehicles and that kind of tech, rather than this kind of stuff, (which I grant you is well posed and detailed!)

I think it might be worth "Chaosifying" (spikes, skulls, icons) the Forgeworld Storm Eagle instead of using the Heldrake...
Copyright Forgeworld.
What do you think of the new models?


Thursday, September 20, 2012

My Chaos in CHAOS! Help!


In a recent post I described an awesome discount haul of GW stuff from a gaming friend who is leaving Japan. Over the last couple of days I have had a chance to look in more detail.

Below are images of the Chaos Space Marine units that were mainly assembled. There was also a ton of bitz and lots of Warhammer and fantasy terrain. I am pretty excited to get a new 40K army, but can anyone help me:

  1. identify the units?
  2. give me some idea of how I should group the units? (Especially the 35 CSM models!)
  3. tell me what I should invest in to make this a playable "fun" army in a casual gaming group of friends? (where "counts as" is probably fine.)

I don't have the Chaos SM Codex (I will wait for the new one) so any advice on rough points would also be great! I have numbered the pics below. (Sorry they aren't better - taken at night...)

1.) Army (Assembled)

2.) Troops

x10 CSM
x10 CSM
x10 CSM
x5 CSM (made from various SM and CSM bits cobbled together)

Each unit has a flamer, Plasma or other heavier weapon - or two.

x1 Rhino (Dozer Blade available.)
x8 Khorne Berzerkers?

3.) Heavy Support

x5 Havocs

x4 Havocs

x1 Defiler (all the trimmings available)

4.) Fast Attack

x2 CSM Bikes

5.) HQ/ Command?

x1 Captain?
x1 Sergeant?

In my cupboard I also found a Fantasy Khorne Juggernaut with rider. He has no head or arms, so presumably I could swap in some CSM bits and use him?

Finally, I have the following:

x3 CSM Terminators (no arms or heads)

x1 WFB Khorne Champion? Convert to HQ?

Can anyone help with how I could turn this into an army, approximately what points it would be, and what I could add at low cost to add some more "Bang" or flexibility?
e.g. CSM Rhinos?

Cheers and thanks for any advice!


Sunday, September 16, 2012

How to Paint High Elf Silver Helms

Welcome to another painting guide here on the Chattering Horde. This time, we take a look at an iconic cavalry unit in the Warhammer Fantasy World... High Elf Silver Helms. This guide joins guides for the High Elf Swordmasters of Hoeth, Spearmen and Archers already on the site, and I hope to have a few others up in the coming weeks. 

Before we get started, please note that this guide is intended to get a "tabletop" quality unit done - good enough to proudly grace any gaming table and do battle! As I am not a painting expert, if you are looking for award-winning quality, you will have to look elsewhere. 

EDIT: Following the launch of the latest Citadel Paint range in 2012, please note that the colours listed below are from the previous range. I hope to have time to rewrite in the future, but for the time being, you can use the conversion chart/ list I made here or use the official Citadel Conversion chart here.

So, on with the show. Marshal your forces! 

  • Skull White (spray undercoat)
  • Chaos Black 
  • Skull White 
  • Bleached Bone 
  • Codex Grey 
  • Space Wolves Grey 
  • Knarloc Green 
  • Snot Green 
  • Dark Angels Green 
  • Snakebite Leather 
  • Calthan Brown 
  • Tallarn Flesh 
  • Dwarf Flesh 
  • Elf Flesh
  • Boltgun Metal 
  • Chainmail 
  • Mithril Silver 
  • Dwarf Bronze 
  • Shining Gold 
  • Liche Purple 
  • Warlock Purple 
  • Devlan Mud(Wash) 
  • Ogryn Flesh (Wash) 
  • Gryphonne Sepia (Wash) 
  • Badab Black (Wash) 

Step 1: Preparation 

Generally, I assume not much needs to be said here. 
There are a couple of classic points to reinforce though. 
a.) When using a craft knife or blade at any point, be careful. Compared to the High Elves, we humans live pitifully short lives. A shame then to have even that brief contribution to the world cut short by a lethal craft-knife accident, or to spend the remainder of one's life and career a digit or two short of a full complement. 
b.) Clippers are a perfectly good way to remove model parts from the sprue, and a small file works really well for filing away mould lines etc. 

Step 2: First Basing 

Decent bases can make all the difference to a model and the visual impact of a unit, and they are surprisingly easy to do! At this point, I recommend the following (to save time later). 
- Apply PVA glue (or watered-down PVA glue) to top of the base of the model. 
- Quickly drop 2-3 pieces of crushed coral onto the glue. I prefer 2-3 pieces as I find this doesn't overwhelm the base, but you decide! (You can find crushed coral anywhere that aquariums are sold)
- While the PVA is still wet, sprinkle on (or dip the whole base into) modelling sand. 
- Allow to dry.

Step 3: Undercoat 

I use Citadel Chaos Black or Skull White spray paint here to quickly and easily undercoat the whole unit. In general, most people use a Skull White undercoat for a unit that will use brighter colours, while Chaos Black works well for units that will be muted, or use darker colours. Although I used Chaos Black for my other High Elves, here I used Skull White. Regardless of which you use, a key point is not to spray too close to the models, as this will clog up the detail with paint. 

Step 4: Basecoat(s) 

With a decent undercoat on which to work, we can now add our basecoats. These are the basic colours for the model. 
In this case I used the following. 
Tallarn Flesh: Skin, hands 
Snakebite Leather: Gloves 
Chainmail: Horse barding, rider's armour, sword fittings 
Mithril Silver: Lance heads 
Liche Purple: Edges of reigns, barding, rider's robes/ armour, fittings on lances. 
Dwarf Bronze: Musician's instrument, fittings on rider's helms, fittings on rider's armour, knee armour, shield fittings. 
Bleached Bone: Lance hafts, sword scabbards 
Snot Green: Gems 
For the horses, I used several colours throughout the unit to add some variety: Calthan Brown, Vermin Brown, Codex Grey, Space Wolves Grey and Chaos Black.

NOTE: It looks to me from reviewing my pictures that I added some colour at this point to the base (overbrushing some Codex Grey etc.) Usually however I wouldn't do that until after the rest of the model is painted.

Step 5: Washes 

Note the washes painted into the horse's legs at right.
Also the manes and tails.
Now that we have the basecoats on, your cavalry are starting to look ready to take the field, but they will still look a bit 2 dimensional, because they don't have any "Depth". Depth is created by having shadows in the right places, and the easy way to do that is to use washes. 

I use Games Workshop washes (because they are available to me) but if you don't have any, you can make your own using very watered down basecolours. I have never done this, but I understand that a touch of PVA glue in your homemade wash will help the paint flow nicely into the recesses of the model. (Just Google "How to make your own washes" to find articles like this one.)  

I use the following washes: 
Badab Black: Armour (rider and horse), and anywhere I had used Dwarf Bronze (helmets, musicians instrument etc.) 
Ogryn Flesh: Rider's skin, hands. 
Gryphonne Sepia: Gloves, feathers on the Champion's headdress 
Devlan Mud: Painted into the recesses of the muscles of the horse

I haven't painted horses before, so I went conservative by painting the washes into certain key areas where there would be a lot of shadow (around the muscles, in the mane etc.) but I didn't wash the whole horse. This meant that in the final analysis, the actual horse looks a bit "clean". I decided to leave it there, but again, the good 'ol internet offers lots of good articles like this one:  

Step 6: Layers 

Elf Flesh layers on the musician's face (center)
You can just make out Shining Gold highlights and Warlock Purple layers
Warlock Purple layers can be seen here.
Now that the model has some depth to it, we need to build up some contrasting areas of highlights. One way to do this is with layers of progressively lighter shades of our basecolours on raised areas of the model. 
When layering, be careful to leave the darker washes in the recesses of the model untouched. 
Tallarn Flesh/ Dwarf Flesh/ Elf Flesh mix: (Skin/ Hands) 50/50 mix of Tallarn Flesh with DF or EF, followed by a 30/50 mix. 
Snakebite Leather/ Bleached Bone: (Gloves) 50/50 mix on the raised areas. 
Chainmail: Horse barding, rider's armour, sword fittings. 
Liche Purple/ Warlock Purple: (Edges of reigns, barding, rider's robes/ armour, fittings on lances.) 50/50 mix, followed by 30/50 mix. 
Dwarf Bronze/ Shining Gold: Musician's instrument, fittings on rider's helms, fittings on rider's armour, knee armour, shield fittings etc. 
Bleached Bone/ Skull White: Edges of lance hafts, sword scabbards etc. 

A note on Skull White: As I was painting onto a thin Skull White basecoat, at this point I needed to add multiple further layers of Skull White onto any white areas of the horse armour and rider (robes etc.) It took several more layers to get the smooth effect I was looking for (2-3). The key point is to make sure that each layer you apply is nice and thin and applies evenly. Make sure your Skull White paint is watered down a bit when you apply each layer, and that you give each layer time to dry before applying the next one. This takes time, but gives a much nicer effect than a lumpy thick coat of white. 

A note on Gems: As I mentioned in my Swordmasters guide, I tend to leave gems until after drybrushing (step 7 below). I worry that drybrushing is an imprecise process that could easily spread the drybrushed colour over the gems, ruining the effect. If this doesn't worry you, they could easily be done at the same time as the other layers.

Oh, and a tip for the gems is to add a tiny dot of Skull White to the top and bottom of the gem, this adds a really nice effect!
Green gems.
Red Gems: Red Gore/ Blood Red mix: (70/30 mix, layering up to a 30/70 mix along the bottom edge of the gem)
Green Gems: Dark Angel Green/ Snot Green mix (70/30 mix, layering up to a 30/70 mix along the bottom edge of the gem).  Also the enchanted writing on the unit leaders sword.
To see how these turn out, take a look at some of the images at the end of this post.

Step 7: Drybrushing 

Chainmail/ Mithril Silver: Rider and horse armour. Brush very lightly across the barding of the horse in particular. 
Shining Gold: Any fittings or areas where you used Dwarf Bronze previously (musician's instrument, sword fittings, champion's helm etc.) 

Step 8: Final Basing 

Now that we have all the colours on the model done, we can do the final basing. At the same time we will be covering up any paint that has gone onto the base from our work on the horse's hooves etc.
Calthan Brown: Overbrush across the base, being careful to avoid the legs of the model
Snakebite Leather: Drybrush across the base. Paint the base edges. (I find 2 coats gives a nice smooth finish.)
Codex Grey: Drybrush lightly across the base, paint any crushed coral.
Fortress Grey: Drybrush any crushed coral rocks to add a natural highlight.
Paint on PVA glue, and then sprinkle static grass onto the base.

There we go! 

Some images of the final unit below. 

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